C.V.A.M. came into being in July 1984 and in November of that year it was incorporated as a non-profit society. The founder was Grace Isaacs, who had moved from Surrey two years earlier into what was then Matsqui. In Surrey she had been the president of the Surrey Concert Society and on arriving in Matsqui she became involved with the Fraser Valley Festival of the Arts. She saw a need for, and started, a series of music workshops, which led to the start of a youth orchestra.
At this time, Hedy Hein introduced herself and the Suzuki method she had trained in. The result was a small music academy with a limited range of instruments and a small staff. In 1990, Grace Isaacs retired and our first administrator, Robert Graham, was hired. Robert brought us into the computer age with a custom designed computer system to track registrations and finances. When Robert moved on in his career in 1994, Les Trendall became the administrator. During his tenure, Les has sought to streamline the Academy's operation and raise our profile in the communities we serve. In 1996, an opportunity came to take over the operation of Toews' Yamaha Music School. It was a giant step, which was finalized in June of that year and saw student numbers increase to over six hundred. The Yamaha School brought not only an increase in students and staff, but also a second campus. In 1997, modifications to the west campus allowed all activities to concentrate there.
The Academy is also part of an Abbotsford Arts Council initiative to build a new arts facility including studios and a small theatre. We would like to become one of the major tenants of the new building if the go-ahead is given and funding approved.
The Academy has a Board of Directors made up of volunteers, and members who assist at various functions such as the annual summer camp, student recitals and concerts. The Academy also publishes a newsletter three times a year free to students and members.
Central Valley Academy of Music is a non-profit society committed to providing the highest quality of musical education to the Abbotsford & Mission communities. Our mandate is to foster, encourage and support the advancement of music, musical culture and the highest forms of musical art. To this end, our principle goal is to provide quality musical training.